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Death Is Bad For Business – We Can’t Go Blindly Into The Night by CE George Latimer

Pull out your calculators and join me in some basic math.

We have 4,000 tested cases of coronavirus in Westchester right now. A week ago we had 400. We are testing like no other county per capita in the nation. But the growth is exponential…. in a week’s time where will be? Let’s assune conservatively it doesn’t grow by 10x next week, let’s just say it’s 5x growth.

A week from today, 20,000 cases in Westchester alone.

Two weeks after that (I’m told it takes 3 weeks for the virus to mature in your system), 20% of 20,000 people need to be hospitalized. 80% fight it off on their own = 16,000 positives are okay.

4,000 are not.

We have 3,000 beds in the County hospitals right now assuming no one else is ill for any other reason. So we take the emergency step of making the County Center a hospital. I don’t think that’s 1,000 beds. We still need more beds.

Worse news: 25% of hospitalized patients need ICU level care. That’s 1,000 people. Right now we have 160 ICU beds in our hospitals. We’d be 840 ICU beds short. Depending on how many ventilators we get will determine how many people get help. Depending on how many healthy doctors and nurses we have at the ready.

And by the time we desperately need ventilators, there won’t be enough there. It will be a horrid sight to see people gasping for air, in the last throes of their lives and there won’t be anything anyone can do. We waited too long.

Now you can’t put up a wall around Westchester. How many Rocklanders sick, how many Orange and Putnam County residents sick and unable to get beds there?

And how many beds in the metropolis of New York City for the numbers that get sick there?

Now somewhere out there in rural America, they believe this disease is a New York disease. BTW it’s the “Chinese Virus”, if that makes you feel better. They’re not adding hospital beds. They’re feeling pretty secure. Only 35 cases in their whole state. They’ll be open for business in April.

But… they don’t have 3 testing sites in the whole state ( we have 3 in Westchester alone). They’re only testing first responders. They’re counting on 80% of the people feeling fine. And let’s get the roaring economy back roaring again. It’s good for business.

Death is bad for business.

Italy losing over 1,000 people last weekend is bad for business. Italy is one-fifth of the USA. How good will business be if in one weekend 5,000 Americans were to die. (We lost 56,000 in Vietnam over a decade).

Simple math.

Now the editorial. I don’t know if we won’t have high fatality numbers in a Westchester or in NY State. Governor Cuomo is fighting like a tiger to prevent that, and all the villages, towns and cities, with the County is trying to prevent this too.

Put beds in the County Center. Use Glen Isand for testing. Have our EOC distribute necessary resources. Use our resources, even as our revenues tank, if it helps save lives.

It’s simple math. And every integer is a human, a person alive today that may be dead in a month, if we don’t use our best sense.

We will have an economic disaster to clean up – individuals, businesses, non profits, governments. But lives will be saved.

But we can go blindly into the night – don’t test, don’t prepare, and rely on some vague sense of our exceptionality to protect our people. Blame this on the Chinese, blame it on New York. Blame, blame, blame. Attack, attack, attack. Makes some people feel better.

If some of us elected officials (who should know better) are so cavalier with people’s lives, we don’t deserve re-election.

And in time, the simple math will prove that too.

God help us.


About Black Westchester (975 Articles)
Black Westchester - News With The Black Point Of View is an online news magazine for people of color for Westchester and the Tri- State area of New York at every economic level. Our mission is to promote the concept of “community” through media.
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